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Levi Strauss & Co. (LS&CO) is a privately held clothing company known worldwide for its Levi’s brand of denim jeans. It was founded in 1853 when Levi Strauss came from Buttenheim, Franconia, (Kingdom of Bavaria) to San Francisco, California to open a west coast branch of his brothers’ New York dry goods business. Although the company began producing denim overalls in the 1870s, modern jeans were not produced until the 1920s.
The company briefly experimented (in the 1970s) with employee ownership and a public stock listing, but remains owned and controlled by descendants and relatives of Levi Strauss’ four nephews.
Organization Levi Strauss & Co. is a worldwide corporation organized into three geographic divisions: Levi Strauss Americas (LSA), based in the San Francisco headquarters; Levi Strauss Europe, Middle East and Africa (LSEMA), based in Brussels; and Asia Pacific Division (APD), based in Singapore.
The company employs a staff of approximately 10,500 people worldwide, and owns and develops a few brands. Levi’s, the main brand, was founded in 1873 in San Francisco, specializing in riveted denim jeans and different lines of casual and street fashion.  Levi’s, under the leadership of Jay Walter Haas Sr. Peter Haas Sr. , Paul Glasco and George P. Simpkins Sr. , expanded the firm’s clothing line by adding new fashions and models, including stone-washed jeans through the acquisition of Great Western Garment Co.
(GWG), a Canadian clothing manufacturer. GWG was responsible for the introduction of the modern “stone washing” technique, still in use by Levi Strauss. Mr. Simpkins is credited with the company’s record paced expansion of its manufacturing capacity from fewer than 16 plants to more than 63 plants in the United States from 1964 through 1974.
Perhaps most impressive, however, was Levi’s expansion under Simpkins was accomplished without a single unionized employee as a result of Levi’s’ and the Haas families’ strong stance on human rights and Simpkins’ use of “pay for performance” manufacturing at the sewing machine operator level up. As a result, Levi’s’ plants were perhaps the highest performing, best organized and cleanest textile facilities of their time. Levi’s even piped in massive amounts of air conditioning for the comfort of Levi’s workers into its press plants, which were known in the industry to be notoriously hot. 004 saw a sharp decline of GWG in the face of global outsourcing, so the company was closed and the Edmonton manufacturing plant shut down.  The Dockers brand, launched in 1986 which is sold largely through department store chains, helped the company grow through the mid-1990s, as denim sales began to fade.
Dockers were introduced into Europe in 1993. Levi Strauss attempted to sell the Dockers division in 2004 to relieve part of the company’s $2 billion outstanding debt.  Launched in 2003, Levi Strauss Signature features jeanswear and casualwear. 6] In November 2007, Levi’s released a mobile phone in co-operation with ModeLabs. Many of the phone’s cosmetic attributes are customisable at the point of purchase.  Company Background In 1853, Bavarian immigrant Levi Strauss founded Levi Strauss and Company which is now the world’s largest brand-name apparel marketers with sales in more than a hundred and ten countries. At present, there is no other company with an equivalent international presence in the jeans and casual pants markets. The company’s market-leading apparel products are sold under the brands of Levi’s, Dockers and Levi Strauss Signatures.
It was in 1873 when the Levi’s jeans, the world’s first jeans, were born when Levi Strauss and Jacob Davis, a tailor from Nevada, patented the process of putting rivets in pants to make it stronger. The Levi’s trademark is currently one of the most recognized in the world and is registered in more than a hundred and sixty countries. From a company with fifteen salespeople, two plants, and almost no business east of the Mississippi in 1946, the organization grew in thirty years to include a sales force of more than 22,000, with 50 plants and offices in 35 countries. 7] The company took on multi-billion dollar debt in February 1996 to help finance a series of leveraged stock buyouts among family members. Shares in Levi Strauss stock are not publicly traded; the firm is today owned almost entirely by indirect descendants and relatives of Levi Strauss, whose four nephews inherited the San Francisco dry goods firm after their uncle’s death in 1902.  The corporation’s bonds are traded publicly, as are shares of the company’s Japanese affiliate, Levi Strauss Japan K. K.
After more than two decades of family ownership, rumors of a possible public stock offering were floated in the media in July 2007.  Values and Vision We are the embodiment of the energy and events of our time, inspiring people from all walks of life with a pioneering spirit. We are the embodiment of the energy and events of our times, inspiring people with a pioneering spirit. We believe that business can drive profits through principles, and that our values as a company and as individuals give us a competitive advantage. Empathy — walking in other people’s shoes?
Empathy begins with paying close attention to the world around us. We listen and respond to the needs of our customers, employees and other stakeholders. Originality — being authentic and innovative? The pioneering spirit that started in 1873 with the very first pair of blue jeans still permeates all aspects of our business. Through innovative products and practices, we break the mold. Integrity — doing the right thing ? Integrity means doing right by our employees, brands, company and society as a whole. Ethical conduct and social responsibility characterize our way of doing business. Courage — standing up for what we believe?
It takes courage to be great. Courage is the willingness to tell the truth and to challenge hierarchy, accepted practice and conventional wisdom. It means standing by our convictions and acting on our beliefs. Levi Strauss & Co. has been innovating since 1873, the year we created the world’s first blue jeans. Throughout its long history it has inspired change in the marketplace, the workplace and the world. Its worldwide leadership team, which includes the CEO and 11 executives, sets the company’s overall direction and is responsible for all major strategic, financial and operational decisions.
Its company leaders around the world aspire to create the most innovative and relevant products in the marketplace, while upholding its values of empathy, originality, integrity and courage. Levi Strauss & Co. prides itself on growing talent from within, and many of its senior-most leaders have risen through the company ranks over the past two or three decades. But to maintain its lead in the fast-changing fashion industry its leadership team also includes executives who bring leading-edge expertise and new ideas from other consumer companies and other industries.